Orthodox beliefs follow the Julian Calendar, which means that Christmas falls in early January. The run up to Christmas in St. Petersburg during December is an enchanting experience. Markets sell traditional Russian handicrafts, tasty treats and an exuberant holiday atmosphere which you will witness as your hotel is right by the Nevsky Prospect, St. Petersburgs Oxford Street. This really is a rare opportunity to visit this city without the crowds of tourists as you will have the Hermitage and other Romanov palaces almost to yourself.
We include a performance at the world famous Mariinsky Theatre, visits to the State Hermitage Museum, the Sheremietev Palace with a private carol concert in a magnificent state room, The Pavlosk and Catherines Palaces (including the Amber Room) where at this time of year the chandeliers will be illuminated to display their full magnificence. With a Troika ride in the palace grounds its hard not to hum along to Prokofiev already!